tv Newsmakers CSPAN February 8, 2015 6:30pm-7:01pm EST
focus. the committees are going to focus on this, but we have not heard the same level of passion from republican leadership on either side. there is a lot of lip service, this is bad, but no real solutions, no real plans to get rid of this. as we get closer and closer to the fall, and less there is a major changes, we are looking at is becoming a gigantic issue. john: is it surprising that a veteran member of congress would say the public has some role to play in the dysfunction that is happening on capitol hill? leo: the congressman has said this in the past. he has, at least for the last several years, he has lamented how much of this attitude there is. if we want a balanced budget, we have to balance it by cutting certain things, especially the base closure rounds he spoke of. very few lawmakers have been supportive of that idea. he has. we need to get rid of excess capacity, find some way to make savings. that is one provision that has been wildly unpopular on the hill.
nobody seems to like it. craig: i think the congressman has a point that there are crosscurrents going on in terms of public opinion, and it is hard to match everybody's expectation. at the same time, i think the american people expect a certain amount of leadership out of congress, and that they shouldn't just be poll-driven in how they react. i'm not saying congressman smith is like this, but i think people have an expectation that their leaders in washington will rise above that. john: thanks for joining us on "newsmakers" this week. >> keep track of the republican-led congress and follow its new members to its first session. new congress will best access on c-span c-span2 c-span2 radio and c-span.org. >> tonight on q&a, david brooks
columnist for the new york times , on writing an article for the times and the awards he gives out at the end of the year. the sydni awards. >> the sydni -- sydni awards are given for the best magazine essay of the year. the idea is that they always come around christmas week. that is a good week to step back and not reached -- re-ad. it is to celebrate those longer pieces. i do believe it has changed history. the new republic was the most influential american political magazine of the 20 century. it created progressivism. it created a voice for modern liberalism. >> tonight at 8:00 eastern on
c-span's q&a. >> sergei calabro was in germany for the munich security conference. the event brings together heads of state and other leaders. the russian foreign minister spoke about the current conflict between russia and ukraine and other issues like missile defense in the middle east. this is 45 minutes. >> i am, i want to start by saying thank you to sergey lavrov, whom i first met, i believe almost exactly 20 years ago when he was still the permanent representative at the united nations. and we were working at that time on the solutions to the bosnian crisis.
and i want to thank for mr. sergey lavrov of being a great individual at the security conference. thank you for coming here each year. this is probably not going to be a fun event for you, because you will have many questions, but i know you are looking forward to explaining the russians russian point of view, so without further and do, as soon as everyone has found a seat, i would like to invite mr. lavrov to speak with us, and we will also have a question and answer period. mr. foreign minister. [applause] >> thank you very much.
i have included in the topic collapsing world order, that's we have followed a less than opportunistic scenario, however, we could not agree with those who say that there was a sub collapse of the world order, rather, recent developments have corroborated our warnings about deep, systemic issues within security in the european union. let me remind you of the speech by president putin made here eight years ago. the construct of stability based on the united nations health and security principle has been undermined by the united states. it was undermined by nato's enlargement of the east.
the common european home was not built because there was not an interest in building a common security structure. the commitment made as part of osce commitments to consider each other's securities was ignored. the missile defense is proof of destructive moves and disregard of other states his interest. our proposals were rejected by the united states, and instead we were recommended to join the american global defense system under washington's ideas, and any actions undermining
strategic stability entails counter measures which means long-term damage is a done to arms control. the liability of which is dependent on defense. we don't understand this american obsession with global missile defense. is it a desire to achieve global dominance? to find technical solutions to political issues? anyway, the missile threats haven't not decreased, however there is a major irritant and it will take a long time to get rid of it. another important factor is a rejection by the united states and other major allies to ratify the treaty. in any situation, the united states is trying to blame russia for everything. let's take the recent talks
about the imf treaty. experts are aware of the united states's actions and as part of a global missile defense system, washington has the floyd target missiles with performance characteristics close to land-based ballistic missiles banned by the inf. the treaty's definitions of cruise missiles are very close weaponize drones. the treaty bans interceptor missiles developed in romania and poland. the american counterparts site some claims against russia with
respect to inf, but avoid specific facts. based on this, we should not try and reduce today's crisis to last year's events. we believe this is the climax of a policy conducted in the past 25 years aiming to dominates international relations in europe. the cis countries, our neighbors connected with us by historic , cultural, economic, and family ties, the cis countries were required to make a choice are , you with us or are you against us? following the zero-sum logic unfortunately the strategic partnership with russia and the european union has not withstood the test. i should mention the missed
opportunity to realize the initiative launched by mrs. merkel to set up a russia-eu foreign-policy eu community, russia supported it, and the eu rejected it. it would effectively solve issues and address concerns ahead of time. as regards to ukraine, at any stage of the crisis, the american counterparts and the european union under their influence took steps to escalate the conflict. this was the case when the european union refused to involve russia in the discussion of economic issues of the agreement, and then they directly supported the coup d'etat and the unrest.
our western partners, so to speak, issued indulgences to pardon key authorities who started a full-scale military operation, and called her citizens terrorists, and calling them terrorists who were not in agreement with the anti-constitutional coup d'etat. it is very difficult to explain why conflict resolution principles do not apply to this case and these principles are included in other dialogues with iraq, syria, mali, south sudan and our partners have been urged governments of those countries to come to an agreement with the opposition, but with ukraine they have taken a different line, conniving at kiev's attempts to even justify the use
of cluster bombs. unfortunately, our western partners are turning a blind eye to everything done by kyiv authorities. let me give you a quote, "the issue of total ukraine would result 3-6 months through a tough and balanced policy." this is a quote by the commander of the regiment, and they argued for ethnic purges of ukraine for the expulsion of russian and juice.
these statements did not generate a response in western capitals, and i do not believe that europe can afford to ignore the spread of nationalistic violence. the ukrainian crisis cannot be resolved by force. last year, the situation forced the authorities to sign the minsk agreement, despite the fact that there are growing appeals in the west to support the kiev policy of militarization and to pump ukraine a full of lethal weapons, and to fold it into nato. this will only exacerbate the tragedy of ukraine. russia will be committed to peace. we are against those.
we would like to see a withdrawal of heavy weapons, we would like to see a direct negotiation between kiev and russia. this was the focus on many initiatives by president putin. those were our subsequent attempts, including the talks in the negotiations yesterday with russia, germany, and france. these negotiations will continue. we believe that there are good grounds for optimism and we want to issue recommendations of for conflict resolution. it is important for everybody to realize the scale of the problem . the world is at a turning point. the labor pains are reflected in
the growing conflicts in international relations. if opportunistic decisions take the upper hand, we may lose control of global governance. let me remind you that at the beginning of the syrian conflict , many in the west urged not to exaggerate the threat of extremism, that it will go away on its own accord. you have see what has happened. there are huge terrorism attacks are happening in afghanistan and there is no longer government control, extremism is spilling over into other regions, including europe. the situation in the middle east is growing explosive. there are no sufficient strategies to address those challenges. i hope that the discussions today and tomorrow will move us
closer to understanding where we stand in the situation, but we should talk about this on an equal basis without ultimatums and threats. it would be easier to do this if we agreed on strategic principles in our relations. the permanent secretary of the french cabinet said recently that europe is impossible without russia. i would like to know whether this a viewpoint is shared by others? do they want to create a security architecture with russia or without russia? i would like to address this question to our american counterparts.
we have long suggested building a unified economic and military space and it is especially important to set up interaction between eurasian economic union and the european union, and we welcome growing support for this idea by european leaders. in this year, we celebrate the 40th anniversary of the helsinki act and the 25th anniversary of the paris charger. we would like to reaffirm our commitment to these principles and we would like to continue , prosperity in the european region. we wish success to the group of wise men of osce celebrating the 70th anniversary of the second world war. we should be aware of our common
and shared responsibilities. thank you very much. [applause] >> foreign secretary lavrov, thank you very much. he has agreed to take some questions. we have a bit of time. i have already received two cards with two questions and will take those first and then we will call on the next colleagues. just give me a chance to call up the first one. the first one was joe yoffe, whom i am going to ask, where is he? i'm going to have him ask this question himself. >> mr. foreign minister, i understand all of the problems that you mentioned that you had with the united states, such as cfe, or
on the missile defense, and apart from the fact, or on the treaty against cruise missiles but i would add as a footnote, obama finally took down, essentially, the european missile defense system. what i don't understand is, if you have problems with the united states, why did you make ukraine pay for it by taking crimea and being well on the way to annexing or splitting ukraine? what did the ukrainians do that you punished them for the malfeasance of the united states? [applause] >> well i think you have a distorted view of things. i don't think we should lump all of these things together.
what i spoke about is this some , people would say that we have to set on the ukrainian crisis and the whole system of european instability, and it is the other way around, we have to settle the crisis as a first priority but we cannot shut our eyes to the fact that people will find the opportunity at the end of the cold war and these should not be complied with. we are not going to take revenge on someone, particularly at other peoples expense. we are seeking normal relations with the united states. it was not the united states come up it was us, that that provided daily contact, and it is not us who withdrew from the abm treaty. it was not us who refused to ratify the cfe treaty.
we have to pick up the pieces and carry on. we must agree on a new system of security where everyone can feel safe, including ukraine, including georgia, including those whom our american colleagues, but they made a choice. you've got to reduce your cooperation with russia. i know that ambassadors receive such instructions. i can see a short while ago, gave an interview where he heard that nato is the most peaceloving alliance in the world. and who bombed yugoslavia? who dropped bombs on libya in violation of the un security council resolution. such unilateral action can have the kind of result that we are witnessing in the middle east right now.
it is not important to us whether nato is a model security organization. it should be an equal part of partner in the dialogue to ensure security and stability, so what is wrong with that? everyone wants to accept the primacy of nato and the united states. i don't think it is in the interests of global security and stability. the u.s. president short while ago said the u.s. acted as a broker in the position of power in ukraine. that is an interesting way of putting it. we know what actually happened we know who discussed what over the phone and who suggested candidates for ministerial posts in ukraine. as for the protest, we did not
have any military experts there but we know who did. , we hope that the ukrainian nation will restore unity but it must be done on a national dialogue. so ukraine suggested suggested new national holidays the date of the formation of the rebel army. how can those qualities be celebrated in the eastern ukraine when in western ukraine there is a celebration of the second world war? so there is a need for political agreements. we know that mobilization is in progress in ukraine. it is experiencing difficulty. the hungarian minorities feel
that many more people are being recruited. i think that this is what we should discuss. there are minorities in ukraine, not only ethnic ukraine's ukrainians. they wish to enjoy equal rights. when the election was held in ukraine, i know that the hungarian wine already asked to draw the borders so that one ethnic community had a chance to get an individual elected to the federal government. so these are real problems that prevent ukraine from pulling itself out of this crisis, that -- but they are being a swept under the carpet in the west asking people about what they feel about the law, and i think it is an awful lot.
why should we state that openly? and my partners say that the -- we believe that the re-cleaning government should be supported right now and it should not be criticized so that , is the end of the discussion and i sincerely hope that there was influenced taken yesterday by the french president and the russian president and the german chancellor will present itself and we would be able to diffuse the situation and start a badly needed national dialogue to address the entire economic and social problems. >> thank you, sergey, we have a huge number of questions, so there is no way we can handle all of those, but the next question comes from a one of our young leaders in the leaders group, and if i am not mistaken,
this young leader is actually ukrainian. are you there? >> yes, i'm here. >> minister, coming back to the results of not only yesterday's negotiation in moscow but in kiev, the good news which comes out is that minsk accords, agreements, are still on the table, while the bad news is that not all the signatories to the minsk agreements are willing to fulfill the minsk agreements. by not all, i mean the representatives who are still waging offensive warfare shelling civilians etc.. and i also mean the russians because i remind you your ambassador to kiev has signed the minsk arrangement as well. we now see the position of russia, renegotiating, or i would say not exerting enough pressure to the militants, which you admit you are having an influence on. so let's imagine that you really
want to implement the minsk arrangement. what guarantees can you as a minister, foreign affairs of russia, give that the minsk arrangements and, first of all further documents to be concluded? what guarantees they will be fully implemented, all 12 points implemented, and that you will use all your influence and pressure on the militants to fulfill them to the full extent and to bring peace? thank you. >> as soon as the key participants in the minsk process, the ukrainian government, and the leaders of the self-proclaimed republics achieve agreement on the practical aspects of the minsk agreements, i am sure that russia will be among those parties that will guarantee the implementation of this agreement. for instance, in the u.n. security council, i'm sure that
france and germany will also be able to provide such guarantees. but you can only guarantee what has already been achieved. you've got to reach an agreement directly. you shouldn't pretend that those people are going to obey what you tell them. they live in their own country. they fight for their own land. and when some people say that they would not be able to win a victory on their own, i'm going to remind you that they're fighting for the cause, while ukrainian soldiers are sent to battle against their will. the u.s. administration was criticized in the past for exercising active contact -- [inaudible] they have said well, they shouldn't criticize for conducting negotiations. yes, they're an enemy, but they should not negotiate with your
friends. you negotiate with your enemies. if the ukrainian government considers the enemy to be their own people, they will have to negotiate with them. i don't think our ukrainian colleagues should hope that, first of all, the support they're receiving will resolve all problems. that support, without any critical analysis of the events, i think it is going to their heads, the way it went to the the georgian leaders had in 2008. and we know how that ended. >> thank you, sergei. >> thank you sergei. i want to ask one question myself. i happen to be part of a group called the european leadership
network, which has russian participants, european and american participants. and which put out recently a study about the kinds of close military encounters that have happened recently in the european airspace and elsewhere. my question to you is this sergei. if it is our first priority to try to find a way to calm down the situation in eastern ukraine, to obtain a cease-fire, should it not be one of our next priorities to try to figure out a way to create an arrangement given the complete breakdown of mutual trust, to create an arrangement that would at least enable all of us, russia, nato, the united states, european countries, so avoid avoidable, unnecessary potentially danger